Konami’s futile attempt to keep the Metal Gear franchise going after Kojima’s departure
We still remember the feeling we had when we started up Metal Gear Solid 5: The Phantom Pain for the first time. Not even a minute into the game and we were already hooked. Even though for the most part we had no idea what was going on. But that has been something of a trademark with Kojima, you have no clue w*f is going on, but you’re definitely entertained. Add to that the fact that the game was genuinely fun with good gameplay mechanics and an enjoyable and whacky new take on the stealth genre itself. All the Metal Gear games so far have been like this – until Metal Gear Survive.
Metal Gear Survive is a direct sequel to the Phantom Pain. As usual, you don’t usually know how something leads to something but there’s a wormhole, or portal, to another dimension that sucks up most of mother base, destroying it in the process. You’re one of the people who supposedly died during this event but you actually didn’t(?). Yep.
Following this is a character creation screen with a decent amount of customisation available to you and honestly, it was the only good thing in our short time playing the game.
Anyway, back to you being dead, but not really. This is because you’re apparently infected with a virus, or rather, there’s an alien inside you and this alien comes from the dimension on the other end of the wormhole. They call the dimension Dite and this where most of the game takes place. The guys who took your body apparently sent a squad to this alternate dimension to deal with the aliens but they haven’t heard back from them, so they want to send you there. The reason they want to send you through the “gates of hell”, which is what they call the wormhole to Dite, is because you’re infected and have no choice but to listen to them if you want to be rid of the alien. And thus the game begins.
The setting is definitely not half as gripping as MGS V’s intro but it’s not complete rubbish either. However, everything after this point is.
It’s running on the same engine after all, how much damage could they do? A lot, it turns out. As soon as you land in Dite, you’re given a brief tutorial that introduces you to the mechanics of the game. You don’t get to carry anything along with you from your world because you need to “shed” everything before going through the wormhole. Now we get that the game is a survival game, it literally has survive in its title, but there are already quite a few decent survival games that have shown how it’s done.
The game’s incredibly monotonous. Add to that the fact that you need to constantly keep an eye on your hunger and thirst, it becomes more of a pain than a challenge. It may seem like we’re whining about the difficulty here, but there’s a fine line between challenging and pain-in-the-a**, especially since your thirst directly affects your stamina. So you can’t run for long. And you’ve got to cover large distances at that sluggish pace. If your hunger levels are low, which they are most of the time, your screen starts getting blurry. And if it hits 0, oops, game over.
Most of the game is just ‘go here, collect this, get it back’. As you progress, the places you need to go just get farther away. We don’t even know if the quest type actually changes because we didn’t bother playing that long.
Then there’s the dust, which is like a huge fog that covers the edges of the map. If you enter the dust, which you have to at times if you want to get more resources because you keep running out, you’re unable to use your tracking features, so you can actually get lost in there if you don’t pay attention.
You also have zombies, but forget about using guns. Bullets are hard to come by, you can craft them but why bother using them when you could just put down a fence and stab the zombies through the fence with your hand-crafted rod. That’s all the “tactics” you need. Put down fence, stab through fence, collect fence.
There’s base building elements in the game as well, you’re able to put down defensive structures and upgrade your crafting stations and such in order to get access to higher tier recipes. But again, you need a boatload of resources to collect, and that’s more running around and you really don’t feel like doing that.
It’s sad really, because there’s a lot more in the game that we haven’t even seen because it’s so much of a hassle just getting to that point.
Metal Gear Survive: Verdict
Played on: PlayStation 4
Price: Windows (Steam) Rs. 2,790, Xbox One and PS4 Rs. 2,499
Metal Gear Survive has a great premise for a survival game but the execution is terrible. You could try enjoying the game, but in order to do that, you’ll just have to pretend that you’re not playing a Metal Gear game. But even then, the ridiculous hunger and thirst levels, monotonous gameplay and weak plot leave much to be desired. Add to that the fact that you always need to be online in order to play the game. If that wasn’t enough, you only have ONE save slot and need to buy additional save slots. Let that sink in. You could say that Metal Gear Survive was destined to get some hate because they let Kojima go, but they deserve credit for killing the franchise in spite of that.
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Manish "Trigger-Happy" Rajesh
If he's not gaming, he's... no wait he's always gaming.